Chapter 201 - Hotel
TL: xDh20, LifeisaJourney
The wind picked up speed, and the sky got darker. They proceeded just as slow as before. Every squad and their squad leader felt anxiety. If the thunderstorm started now, then remaining in the car was the most dangerous thing they could do.
Aside from clearing the parked cars and killing wandering zombies along the path, there was nothing more that the squads could do to speed up their progress. The group was only halfway through their journey.
“Elder Liu, it is impossible to reach our destination before dark at our current speed. Do you think we should find suitable housing for the night?” Zhang ShengLi asked Liu Gan.
“Yes, start searching for one. A thunderstorm can happen anytime now. It would be dangerous for us to continue,” Liu Gan replied after looking at the sky to see cumulonimbus clouds growing on the horizon.
“Understood,” Zhang ShengLi said. Zhang ShengLi then walked up to his squad and pulled them aside after they had finished moving a car.
The darker it got, the stronger the winds. With the threat of a looming thunderstorm on the horizon, lightning flickered. It wouldn’t be too long until it reached them.
Zhang ShengLi was able to find a building that was suitable for a temporary base camp; it was a hotel along the road. The hotel building was more elevated compared to the surrounding buildings. The walls that formed the foundation of the hotel were constructed very sturdily, so the car squad parked close by the hotel to avoid the thunderstorm.
This hotel along the roadside seemed to have been family owned. The surface area was large, it was four-story building that was close to the intersection, and behind the hotel was a possible location for parking the vehicles. The first floor was a large ballroom that could fit seven to eight tables, this area was perfect for hosting dinner reservations and events. Everything on the second floor and above was for housing.
The tornado from a few days ago didn’t have too much of an effect on this hotel building here. At least there weren’t any visible damages on the windows from the outside. It was hard to explain with logic, it didn’t fit with any current comprehension of the worldly matters. Just like this situation here; the tornado, while it was far from the city center, hadn’t been able to affect structures on the outskirts?
Of course, there were some people who didn't pay attention to such minute details.
With the amount of zombies wandering around within the hotel, one could guess that this hotel wasn’t doing so well on the business side. At least for the last two days of the catastrophe, there hadn’t been any visitors, so business wasn’t doing so well. Of the four floors in the whole building, there were only ten zombies. To prevent possible bacterial or viral contamination, the bodies of the zombies were moved a distance away from their location, toward the rear courtyard.
Eventually, the hotel was livable. It was carefully cleaned and everyone rushed into the building before the downpour.
“What happened?” Liu Gan stood at the first-floor lobby as he asked Yin He, who stayed outside.
“I can sense something’s wrong.” Yin He looked at the rear courtyard with an alert expression.
“What do you sense?” Liu Gan started to look toward the rear courtyard. The courtyard was rather simplistic. It was a parking lot, with the three vehicles parked in the middle of the courtyard. There was nothing visibly wrong to the naked eye.
“I can’t tell for sure right now, should I look around?” Yin He asked Liu Gan.
“I’ll go with you,” Liu Gan replied to Yin He.
At this very moment, the lightning brightened the entire sky, followed by the sound of thunder.
“It’s okay, I can go alone. I am not afraid of this lightning. However, you aren’t as invincible.” Yin He stopped Liu Gan.
“Okay then, go quickly and return fast. Don’t travel too far,” Liu Gan said to Yin He. Liu Gan knew that Yin He was stronger, but there were too many accidents that could occur in The Trembling World. Plus, he felt a lingering feeling of uneasiness.
“Okay,” Yin He said as she let go of Liu Gan’s hand. Soon she disappeared from sight into the darkness of the night, under the cover of the thunderstorm.
As the events in the hotel simmered down. They had to bring out the flashlights to illuminate the surrounding. A portion of the players had started a fire to cook dinner for everyone. Those that didn’t have dinner duties sat by the tableside in the ballroom to chat with one another and there were some who sat near the windows to watch the lightning storm.
This thunderstorm and the one from a few days ago were the same. First came the lightning, then the thunder. Throughout the storm, large droplets of rain could be heard hitting on the panels of the window.
The torrential downpour created a flood as the rainwater pooled up to the ankle level on the ground floor. It was a good thing that the hotel was built on elevated ground; there were a dozen steps above the ground level. The flood didn’t reach the first floor of the hotel and to the front of the building was a large gutter. Even as the gutter became filled to the brim with rainwater, the rainwater flowed from the higher to lower grounds. There was no chance for the rainwater to flood the first floor of the hotel.
“Damn! This type of weather is hopeless!” Zhang ShengLi stood by the front door of the hotel and cursed the gods.
“Even other games don’t have weather this harsh! Remember that tornado? That was terrifying! I remember how glad I was that it didn’t head toward my way,” Xue Jian said to Zhang ShengLi.
This game wasn’t like other games. In other games, as long as Xue Jian could bring out more money, he could buy his way into owning legendary equipment. This way, he could earn the envy of others. However, in The Trembling World, there was no way he could do that; he and other players wouldn’t have an advantage over one another. So Xue Jian had started accumulating other advantages like social connections.
Even now, Xue Jian was trying his best to bond with the group. To form good connections with Zhang ShengLi and other squad leaders was what Xue Jian should do first. Among the squad leaders, Xue Jian was the weakest of them all. If Xue Jian doesn’t form a good relationship, then as a representative of his squad, they will have a hard time staying with the group. Xue Jian didn’t want to rely on Liu Gan’s relationship to stay in the group; Xue Jian wanted to earn his keep within the group.
“Wait, that tornado several days earlier never reached you? I bet you won’t believe that we were at the city center. We were in the eye of the storm. It was a terrifying feeling…” Zhang ShengLi recalling the events of that day.
“Ah? You were able to survive the force of the tornado? Even within the eye of the storm?” Xue Jian asked in a shocked expression.
“Yes! That time we had three team members instantly killed by the tornado upon impact. Two of them were killed by a flying truck! Can you imagine that? The building corner got struck by the truck and the debris killed the two members. I witnessed it with my own eyes, there was no time to react to it! It could’ve been any one of us!” Zhang ShengLi recalling his memory.
“Damn! That is terrifying!” Xue Jian exclaimed with his eyes wide open.
“That wasn’t even the most frightening part. The worst part was when the tornado picked up all the zombies into the sky. The tornado connected heaven and earth! After the wind stopped blowing, one by one the zombies started to rain down. The ground formed ten layers of bodies!” Zhang ShengLi continued.